Manufacturing: Costa Rican Exports Decreased 5%

The outlook for the country's manufacturing industry is unfavorable, since in the first four months of the year companies outside the free trade zone reported a 5% year-on-year drop in their sales abroad.

Monday, May 27, 2019

Consistent with the behavior reported since the beginning of the year, in the first four months’ sales of Costa Rican goods abroad remained stagnant, totaling $3,693 million, just 0.2% above the figure reported in April 2018.

The most updated data from the Promotora del Comercio Exterior (Procomer) specifies that from January to April of this year the exports of companies in final regime fell 10%, which explains much of the behavior of sales abroad the country.

Francisco Gamboa, executive director of the Chamber of Industries of Costa Rica (ICRC), explained to Nacion.com that "... the figures show a rather bad outlook as foreign sales of manufacturing industry outside the free trade zone continue to contract in April, with a -5.3% fall over the first quarter of last year.

Gamboa added that "... It is the most severe fall in a first four-month period since 2015. There are very alarming and important falls in industries such as food -11% and metalworking -12%. In this first quarter of 2019, $45 million less was exported than in the same period of 2018."

The behavior described by businessmen from the industrial sector agrees with reports from CentralAmericaData, since it has been reported that in Costa Rica it has become expensive to produce manufactured and agricultural goods, and service exports are gaining more and more ground.

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More on this topic

Costa Rica: Exports Stagnating

April 2019

During the first three months of the year, sales of Costa Rican goods abroad totaled $2.757 million, just 0.5% above the $2.744 million reported as of March 2018.

The most updated data of the Foreign Trade Promoter (Procomer) specify that from January to March of this year the exports of companies in free trade zones registered a 12% year-on-year increase, and in the case of foreign sales of products in final regime fell 9%.

Costa Rica Sells Less to Central America

April 2019

During the first two months of the year, Costa Rican exports to countries in the region totaled $393 million, 3% less than what was reported for the same period in 2018.

According to data from the Promotora del Comercio Exterior (Procomer), in the first two months of 2019 Costa Rica's exports increased by 3.2% over the first two months of 2018, going from $1.743 million to $1.800 million.

Free Zones: Exports Slow Down

September 2018

From January to July 2018, sales abroad from free zones in Costa Rica grew by 8%, well below the 12% increase registered in the first seven months of 2017.

According to data from the Foreign Trade Promotion Office (Procomer) between the first seven months of 2016 and the same period in 2017, exports of products in free zones went from $2.874 billion to $3.208 billion, representing an increase of 11.6%.

Costa Rica: Industrial and Export Figures

May 2016

Industry says that the 7% increase in industrial exports in the first quarter of the year corresponds to free zones, while foreign sales by companies outside of the regime fell by 0.3%.

The industrial association is still blaming the poor results on the loss of competitiveness caused by the exchange rate differential and high production costs.

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